A great perspective on food prices relative to farmer income was put together by the National Farmers Union to kick off Thanksgiving week.

NFU’s Farmer’s Share publication compares the retail food price for traditional holiday dinner items to the amount the farmer receives for each of them.

On average, farmers receive 17.4 cents of every food dollar consumers spend, while more than 80 percent of food costs cover marketing, processing, wholesaling, distribution and retailing, the NFU reported.

For the 15 items NFU tracks for the Thanksgiving version, farmers received 19.4 cents of the retail food dollar.

Turkey growers, who raise the staple Thanksgiving dish, receive about 89 cents per pound retailing at $1.59. Wheat farmers averaged a meager 4 cents on 12 dinner rolls that retail for $3.29.

Dairy producers received only $1.44 for the $4.49 gallon of fat-free milk.

The Farmers’ Share is based on calculations derived from the monthly agriculture prices report produced by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service and compared to price points of common grocery food items at Safeway supermarkets.

On a different note, but also Thanksgiving-related, this is a good time to pause and reflect on all that we are so thankful for.

I’m thankful for my faith, my incredible family and friends, the opportunity to write for this outstanding publication and work with an all-star staff — it’s true, I’m not trying to butter anybody up, not my style — and having the chance to meet so many folks across Illinois in my job travels.

This is a little belated, but during the months — seemed like years — leading up to Election Day, I was extremely thankful for sports. While the Bears, Packers and Cardinals had or are having less than stellar seasons, at least I could switch the channel and get away from the trash.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Tom C. Doran can be reached at 815-780-7894 or tdoran@agrinews-pubs.com. Follow him on Twitter at: @AgNews_Doran.

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